ALLEGAN, Mich., Jan. 24 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- The Perrigo Company (NASDAQ:PRGO) today announced the appointment of two new independent directors to its Board of Directors. The new directors are Gary M. Cohen, President, BD Medical Systems, Becton, Dickinson and Company, and Judith A. Hemberger, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Pharmion Corporation. Mr. Cohen and Ms. Hemberger will fill seats vacated by F. Folsom Bell and Richard G. Hansen.
David T. Gibbons, Perrigo President and Chief Executive Officer, stated, "Gary Cohen and Judy Hemberger are experienced health care executives with strong medical technology and pharmaceutical backgrounds. I look forward to working with them as we build on Perrigo's strengths and grow our pharmaceutical and nutritional health care businesses."
Mr. Cohen, 43, is President of the BD Medical Systems segment of Becton, Dickinson and Company (NYSE:BDX) , a medical technology company servicing healthcare institutions, life science researchers, clinical laboratories, industry and the general public. He joined Becton, Dickinson in 1983, devoting the first half of his career to product management and marketing leadership assignments, and the second half to general management roles, including Worldwide President of the Company's Injection and Sample Collection businesses, and President of BD Europe. Mr. Cohen holds B.A. and M.B.A. degrees from Rutgers University.
Ms. Hemberger, 55, is Co-Founder, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, and a member of the Board of Directors of Pharmion Corporation, a global pharmaceutical company dedicated to acquiring, licensing and commercializing pharmaceutical products in the areas of hematology and oncology. Prior to joining Pharmion in 1999, she was Senior Vice President, Business Development for AVAX Technologies and Senior Vice President, Global Regulatory Affairs for Hoechst Marion Roussel, Inc. She also previously served on the Board of Marion Merrill Dow. Ms. Hemberger has a B.S. degree from Benedictine College and received a Ph.D. from the University of Missouri and an M.B.A. from Rockhurst College.
Perrigo Chairman, Michael J. Jandernoa, said, "With these additions to our Board, seven of Perrigo's nine directors will meet the standards of independence under all existing and proposed stock exchange governance guidelines. I would like to thank Folsom Bell and Dick Hansen for their many years of service to Perrigo. We appreciate their willingness to voluntarily step down from the Board in order to accelerate the implementation of our new standards of governance and increase the independence of our Board."
Dick Hansen joined Perrigo in 1979 when Perrigo sales were $37 million. He played a significant role in the Company's growth and development by serving in various executive capacities, including most recently, as President and Chief Operating Officer, until his retirement in 1999.
Folsom Bell became a member of the Perrigo Board in 1981. Folsom provided valuable counsel on many strategic decisions during the many years he served as an outside director. He will continue to contribute in his current position as Executive Vice President, Business Development, which he has held since 2000.
Perrigo Company is the nation's largest manufacturer of over-the-counter (non-prescription) pharmaceutical and nutritional products sold by supermarket, drug, and mass merchandise chains under their own labels. The Company's products include over-the-counter pharmaceuticals such as analgesics, cough and cold remedies, gastrointestinal, and feminine hygiene products, and nutritional products, such as vitamins, nutritional supplements and nutritional drinks. Visit Perrigo on the Internet (www.perrigo.com ).